Monday, November 29, 2010

Monogrammed Cupcakes

Oh where to start? How about with this: My friend Leora is engaged! And she had a party. And I baked. Of course. Cupcakes! With their initials on them! I cannot speak in full sentences! I don't know why.

I tried out a new cupcake recipe and I was not disappointed. It comes from the unlikely source of Amy Sedaris (better known as comedian and drunk hostess), but they were light, with a good crumb, and a nice dome - likely due to the higher baking temperature.
The trick to these smooth, nice, frosted domes is a technique you will be very happy to hear is extremely easy, and probably takes even less time than frosting them as usual. Take homemade or storebought (gasp!) frosting, zap it in the microwave until it's smooth and stir-able (color if desired) and dip the domes of the cupcakes in. Let dry. 
Tada! I went with pink and green cupcakes (although they look a little blue in this pictures) and used some of the white frosting and a #2 tip to pipe on the initials of the happy couple - Leora and Yoni. 
I was pleased with both the ease and quickness of the recipe - and the final result - although I've never been thrilled with my handwriting. You know what they say about practice makes perfect? Well I've been practicing since 2nd grade and I'm not sure I've seen much improvement.
Plus, check out the super cute cupcake liners you can see in some of the photos. They were pink and green and plaid and super adorable, and I picked them up at the supermarkets. I'm seeing more and more fun liners around, and I may have already picked up some more cool looking ones for future cupcake baking - including polka dots and paisley. 

Come back here on Thursday for a special Chanukah post - you won't want to miss this!

Tip of the Day:  If you don't have a set of pastry tips (or a couple of them) you can cut the tip of a small ziploc bag and use that - although I really recommend the precision of tips. If you do cut your own, start very, very small - you can always make it bigger if necessary.

Recipe:  (adapted from Amy Sedaris)

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups milk

2 cups homemade or storebought frosting
food coloring

Beat the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and beat to combine.
Add in the vanilla, salt and baking powder. Alternate adding the flour and milk, beginning and ending with the flour, and beat until all the ingredients are well combined.
Divide the batter among 24 paper-lined cups. Bake at 375 F for 18 to 20 minutes, or until test done.

Let the pans cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove them to the rack to cool completely, at least 1/2 an hour. They should be completely cool to the touch.
Reserve about 1/4 cup frosting. Place half of the remaining frosting in a microwave-safe bowl and zap it for about 20 seconds. Stir in food coloring if desired. Hold your cupcakes by the paper and dip the domes into the frosting, allowing any excess to drip off. Pop any air bubbles and re-dip for any imperfections. Return to the wire rack and let dry completely. Repeat with the rest of the frosting and cupcakes.

When the frosting is set, use the remaining frosting in a bag with a small tip cut off or with pastry tips fitted to pipe letters on top of the frosting. Let dry.


  1. I think it is more perfect if you add some sprinkles or chocolate syrup to put some colors on your cupcakes.

  2. Ok, I'm guessing this doesn't work with store-bought icing that is whipped? Just tried this with 2 kinds of store-bought icing (whipped cream and whipped cream cheese). Epic fail.

  3. Hi -

    I only tried it with the regular kind, but I'm so sorry it didn't work out! I guess now you know for next time - that is basically the motto of Baking and Mistaking.